Driving Economic Growth: Insights from High-Level Strategy Retreat

Kenya Association of Manufacturers (KAM) was engaged in a high-level strategy retreat workshop alongside the Finance and National Planning Committee of the National Assembly, under the leadership of Chairperson Hon Kimani Francis Kuria.

Our objective was to align manufacturing priorities with the government’s agenda for industrial growth and business reforms. Additionally, we delved into discussions concerning the impact of the Finance Act 2023 and explored potential recommendations for industrialization within the Finance Bill 2024.

During his remarks, KAM Chief Executive Anthony Mwangi emphasized the role of the manufacturing sector in driving economic growth and advancing the government’s Bottom-Up Economic Transformation Agenda (BETA). Mr Mwangi highlighted how manufacturing fosters sustainable development, job creation, innovation, and productivity. He underscored the significant contribution of the private sector, which is the second-largest wage employer after the public sector. The sector creates 352,000 direct jobs, contributes 7.8% to GDP, and generates 18% of tax revenue, injecting KES 360 billion annually into the national coffers.

KAM Trade and Tax Committee Chair, Mr Bharat Shah, noted the profound impact of the manufacturing sector on the economy. He emphasized that the industry’s success depends on collaboration between the government and the private sector.

Hon Kimani Kuria, Chairperson Parliamentary Finance Committee, highlighted various achievements in the Finance Act 2023, emphasizing Kenya’s leading role in e-mobility across East Africa. He stressed that the adoption of successful policies has positioned Kenya as a trailblazer in the region, creating substantial opportunities in the growing e-mobility sector.

In our assessment of the impact of the Finance Act 2023 on the manufacturing sector, we analyzed its influence on employment, product pricing, government tax revenue, exports, and the balance between domestic production and imports. We also presented case studies illustrating its impact on sectors like paper, cement, and steel. It was acknowledged that the overarching goal is to foster the growth of the manufacturing sector. We are actively engaging to establish a level playing field, recognizing the invaluable insights provided by the association into the state of doing business.

KAM also presented proposals concerning domestic taxes, advocating for adjustments to Excise Duty, Export, and Investment Promotion Levy, alongside incentives aimed at benefiting upstream manufacturers. Further, discussions extended to proposals regarding levies, fees, and charges imposed by both county and national governments.

KAM is dedicated to collaborating with the government to foster a business-friendly environment. Amidst navigating the effects of the Finance Act 2023, our focus remains on promoting sustainable development, job creation, and innovation in the manufacturing sector.

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